A Construction project, big or small has always been labor, money, time, and skill intensive. From involving multiple stakeholders of the AEC industry to different software packages to new norms and techniques, developing or revamping a building requires one to be on par with new trends. Reconstruction of existing structures calls for undertaking a building survey through laser scanning technology that develops a point cloud data in 3D coordinate systems which represents the external surface of a building or an object being scanned. This point cloud data is then exported on a CAD or BIM platform to develop a precise As-Built BIM model. This model depicts walls, roof planes, pipes, vegetation, and terrain in and around the building. When 3D point cloud data is sorted out and exported to any BIM package one can derive conventional deliverables like 2D plans, sections, elevations easily. Some of the construction projects that can be undertaken using Scan to BIM services are facility management procedures, refurbishment, renovation activities, building maintenance and surveillance, retrofit, building extension and modifications, and building demolition tasks.
Any construction project goes through a pre-construction, construction, and post-construction stage which involves multiple stakeholders like designers, architects, structural engineers, etc. So, when we talk about a service like Point cloud to BIM it brings about a complete upper hand to the entire life cycle of the project and not just a particular phase. Let us first see the benefits of Scan to BIM for a construction project life cycle:
Benefits of using Scan to BIM for a construction project.
- Pre-construction Bidding: With 3D laser scanning technology the clients can have orthographic projections for the survey remotely. With this, the design team gets access to accurate data related to measurements and dimensions of that building which helps them derive accurate cost estimates and pricing of the project.
- Construction phase documentation: With Scan to BIM there is more accuracy to the design data which directly reduces errors in construction documentation, reduces rework, improves designing, and streamlines troubleshooting.
- Post Construction phase: The effectiveness of Point cloud technology during a post-construction stage or facility management is numerous. From having planned future developments to day-to-day facility management to marketing newly renovated buildings, laser scanning integrated with BIM services becomes a sure shot solution for long term management of infrastructure.
Having seen the advantages scan to BIM provides throughout the lifecycle of the project, let us now dive deep into some of the crucial benefits it provides during the construction phase of a project:
- 3D Model creation with +/-10mm accuracy: The model generated by converting Point cloud to BIM is of the highest accuracy and such a thing benefits all the stakeholders involved in the project. This level of accuracy enhances communication, collaboration, and transparency between all the teams.
- Quality Assured and Reliable Modelling: Building information models that are derived from the point cloud data assures required reliability and quality. The laser scans used to bring about the 3D model deliver an all-inclusive picture of the existing building structure. From intricate parts like beams, MEP components, columns, doors to be remodeled, and the existing design, a detailed informational 3D BIM is brought about. This detailing ensures accuracy and quality that directly reduces complications and unexpected issues during the construction phase.
- Impeccable collaboration among teams: Architects, design engineers, contractors, and end-users can develop high-level collaboration using point cloud to BIM. The models developed from the scans can be used to discuss the existing design and proposed design. With such collaboration and discussions, it becomes easier for varied teams to understand the design flaws, conflicts and implement required updates and changes in the new proposed design. The MEP, structural and architectural model created from scans are integrated by a BIM engineer into a coordinated 3D model to analyze the interferences, threats, and design issues even further in the existing structures along with proposed rectifications to them.
- Assessment of Design: Before the new design is proposed to the client a proper assessment and validation of this proposed design and existing design become one of the crucial steps under the scan to BIM services. The new design is generated from the multiple scans captured during the laser survey of the building and brings a detailed model and one can analyze what changes upgrades are necessary to the existing site compared to the older version. The new design for the site is usually generated based on new design codes, environmental standards, or new parameters and so it becomes necessary to validate these things before finalizing the design. This new design can be an extension to the existing design, a completely new proposal, a design created after interference checking and coordination, etc.
- Cost Reduction: Talking about generating an as-built model based on point cloud to the BIM model saves a huge amount of money in terms of construction planning and budgeting. Due to design validation, collaboration, and virtual modeling the redundancies and errors are detected before actual construction begins which reduces the ample amount of rework, redos, and demolition onsite thereby reducing the overall construction costing. Such a methodology of scanning doesn’t just reduce the labor cost during surveys but also during on-site construction.
- Precise Digital documentation of structures that hold heritage value: One of the prime benefits of Scan to BIM process is that it provides comfort and ease when it comes to error-free digital documentation of old structures and monuments or of infrastructure that holds heritage value. Due to being digital, these can be stored for decades together. When the time calls for restoration or renovation such accurate digital documents can be used flawlessly.
- Potent Decision making when it comes to approvals or norms: The point cloud to BIM aids in determining alterations or renovations needed and assists in quick decision making when we talk of taking approvals or applying required norms. Based on the norms and approvals of the government agencies Scan to BIM enables responsible and collective decision making and ease with design development.
- Globally access through various platforms: Scan to BIM has user-friendly formats like .rcp and .rcs which can be easily accessed across various platforms and various devices, making it easier for teams spread across the globe to access the model from their location. Not just ease in access they can even go ahead and provide their feedback, suggestions and make modifications to the models. Any changes made are automatically reflected in real-time for all the stakeholders involved in the construction project so that there are no redundancies in the design.
Having greater accuracy, reduced reworks, and redundancies with greater collaboration from different platforms and locations, Point Cloud to BIM services provide solutions to restoration construction projects that increase their reliability and power. Irrespective of the current state of a structure utilizing bim modeling services for renovation purposes have proven to be environment friendly and cost-effective to bring about the desired new structure. By saving project cost and wastage and bringing about greater quality and assurance the buildings generated are always compliant with environmental and social norms, thereby making the newly built model and infrastructure sustainable and durable.